Even if you only have minor hearing loss, wearing a hearing aid will make it easier for you to fully experience the world around you. But not all hearing aids are created equal. Here's a look at three of the best styles of hearing aids for people with minor hearing loss.
Also known as ITE hearing aids, this style fits completely inside the ear. It's usually encased in a skin-color plastic to make it less obvious. ITE hearing aids can only amplify sound to a certain extent, but they're more than effective enough for most people with mild hearing loss. They can be a bit difficult to insert into the ear and to adjust, but your hearing aid specialist can teach you how to do this properly. In time, inserting and removing the hearing aid will become second-nature.
If you really don't want anyone seeing your hearing aids, a tiny ITC device may be perfect for you. This type of hearing aid fits into the deeper canal of the ear and is almost impossible to see unless someone purposefully looks into your ear. ITC hearing aids are more expensive than ITE hearing aids, and they're not a good choice if you have poor eyesight or are lacking dexterity in your fingers -- you may have a hard time picking up and inserting the hearing aids with these conditions. The batteries of ITC hearing aids are also hard to change, and since the devices are so small, their batteries need to be changed quite often.
This is the classic style of hearing aid with which you are most familiar. It sits mostly behind your ear with a little microphone that reaches into the ear. BTE hearing aids are more obvious than the other styles on this list, but they are, by far, the most affordable. If you don't mind someone seeing your hearing aid or you only play to wear it some of the time, this may be a good option for you. BTE hearing aids are ideal for patients with arthritis, tremors, and poor eyesight since they are easier to see and manipulate. They're also easier to take off and put on.
If you are in need of a hearing aid, speak with a hearing specialist like Mark Montgomery MD FACS in your area. They can give you estimates for the costs of these three different types, which will help you make the smartest choice for your needs.